We may all have experienced irregular periods during the first one or two years after our very first cycle and that is normal. Usually, your body should have adjusted into a regular cycle (28-35 days) about 2 years after you first saw your period. Then, it will be easier to keep track of your period and note any major changes in your cycle if they so happen to occur.
Delays in period are common but if your period doesn’t come six weeks after your previous cycle, then you can consider it missed. There are quite a number of factors that may bring about a missed period:
They include pregnancy, breast-feeding and menopause.
Some forms of contraception may interfere with your cycle so if you miss your period while on contraceptives, you may want to consult your gynecologist. Getting off contraceptives may also interfere with your cycle.
Some medical conditions may interfere with the production of estrogen and progesterone – the two hormones responsible for menstruation. Some of these conditions are polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) which causes your body to produce more of androgen (a male hormone) and mostly inhibits ovulation, cervical or uterine cancer, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, and thyroid disorders.
Being underweight can make your body go through changes that may bring about an imbalance in your hormones. Women with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia are at a higher risk of missing their period due to this.
Just like being underweight, being overweight can bring changes in your hormones too. Being overweight may cause your body to produce excess estrogen which may affect how often you see your period.
You read that right. Too much of anything is poisonous, right? You may be so engrossed in wanting to maintain a healthy lifestyle through exercising that you don’t realize when you are overdoing it. Too much exercise means burning too much body fat which can actually stop you from ovulating.
Being under too much stress will definitely have a negative impact on your general well-being. Additionally, it may also bring about changes in your menstrual cycle, and may even stop your period. Your period will also be more painful when you are under emotional stress.
When to see your doctor
See a doctor if you experience the following: severe period cramps, unusually excessive bleeding, bleeding for more than a week, nausea and vomiting, missing your period at least 3 times within a year or bleeding after you’ve entered menopause and have not seen your period for 12 months.